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Re: *junctions of time

From:Jim Henry <jimhenry1973@...>
Date:Monday, March 20, 2006, 4:22
On 3/19/06, taliesin the storyteller <taliesin-conlang@...> wrote:
> Given "after", "before", "when", "while", "since", "until" and longer > terms such as "from now on", "from this point forward" etc., how can we > collapse them? > > Before time T, an event happened > Until time T, an event was undergoing > > Since the difference here seems to be between punctual/durative, which > can be marked on the verb, I collapse before and until. Same for since > and after and "from time x into the future"-rewritings.
gzb derives its time-postpositions the same way as its space-postpositions. "before" and "until" have the same prefix "dx-", with different motion-vowels ("i" for location/static time, "o" for motion toward, "rq" (rhotic schwa) for motion from) and different suffixes ("-n" contact with the object of the postpostion, "-j" near the object, etc.) So: dxi -- before dxij -- just before dxon -- until The prefix "sq-" is used for "after". sqi - after sqin -- immediately after sqij - soon after sqir - long after sqrqn - since The bare time/location postposition "i" can also mean "during".
> "While" can be used to mark that something happened at the same time or > during something else happened: while X was happening, Y was also > happening. Not collapsible with before/until or after/since.
> When "when" is synonymous with "once" as in "once we're there", "as soon > as we're there", it does the work of "after" with the added meaning of > immediacy, which can be separated out. "When" can also mean "at, during
"when" is a relative pronoun, I think, temporal equivalent of "where". I derive it with "time + which", "viqj-loq" -- which then needs a postposition to say whether we're talking about "at which time", or "during which time" or "since which time" or what. "viqj loq i" is most common.
> We have: > before, up to time T (before, until) > after, from time T (after, since) > overlapping in time, at time T (while, during, when)
Basically "during" takes a noun object in English and "when" takes a clause. Not all languages use different words for these purposes -- Esperanto has "dum" for both, for instance, and I'm guessing some of the Slavic languages Zamenhof knew have similar dual-purpose particles
> In addition there are lotsa of words for time that does not attempt too > join clauses in any way, like "late", "last", "previous", "now", "then" > etc., these could also be interesting to collapse, especially in that > words like "last" has at least two meanings: "previous" and "final".
gzb has one word for "previous" and "next", which might be translated "immediate/adjacent" -- it combines with other words to be more specific. "now" and "then" are derived from a word for "time" plus a demonstrative and a postpostion: nu koq i, at this time = now nu poq i, at that time = then I derive "last/final" with a word for "end" plus an ordinal suffix: "sun-pa". "late / early" is interesting and tricky, since it has some implied comparison to a "right" time. I haven't got a concise way to express these in gzb yet. Maybe: nu saxr-fwa i moment approval-CAUS at on time, at the moment which causes approval? nu saxr-fwa dxi moment right before early nu saxr-fwa sqi moment right after Another tricky term is "eternal" or "eternity". Obviously I could coin a root word for "eternity" (timeless existence, not an infinite span of time), but I want to derive it with existing root stock if possible, and I haven't figured out how to do it yet. Obvious ones like "viqj-ta" and "vxu-ta" (time-less and duration-less) don't seem to work. I tried "kwiq-ta" (sequence-less), but I'm not sure it's right either. Maybe "kwiq-viqj-ta". Or derive it with the opposite suffix, "viqj-cox" -- but is it obvious [or even true] that eternity is the opposite of time? -- Jim Henry